Health and Social Care Data Board meeting minutes: April 2023

Minutes from the meeting of the health and social care data board on 25 April 2023.

Attendees and apologies


  • Carol Sinclair (CS)

Board members

  • Jonathan Cameron (JC)
  • Susan Cloke (SC)
  • Mel Giarchi MG)
  • Roger Halliday (RH)
  • Scott Heald (SH)
  • Albert King (AK)
  • Penni Rocks (PR)
  • Jonathan Todd (JT)
  • Alison White (AW)

Programme team

  • Ryan Anderson (RA)
  • Simon Crawley (SC)
  • Imme Jones (IJ)
  • Ruth Griffith (RG)
  • Mark Simspon (MS)
  • Gemma Wilson (GW)

In attendance

  • Tom Barlow (TB)
  • Stuart MacMillan (SM)
  • Shona Nicol (SN)
  • Eleanor Platt (EP)
  • Stuart Roebuck (SR)
  • Ross Shaw (RS)
  • Simon White (SW)
  • Ann Wilson (AW)


  • Alan Bell (AB)
  • Marion Bain (MB)
  • Colin Birchenall (CB)
  • Euan Dick (ED)
  • Karen Hedge (KH)
  • Eilidh McLaughlin (EM)
  • Martin Murchie (MM)
  • Lewis Ritchie (LR)
  • Andrew Strait (AS)

Items and actions

Welcome, Introductions and Apologies.

CS welcomed everyone to the seventh meeting of the Health and Social Care Data Board.

Apologies were noted from Alan Bell (AB), Marion Bain (MB), Colin Birchenall (CB), Euan Dick (ED), Karen Hedge (KH), Eilidh McLaughlin (EM), Martin Murchie (MM), Lewis Ritchie (LR), Andrew Strait (AS).

Minutes and Action Log

The board noted:

  • minutes of the previous meeting held on 28 February 2023 were agreed as true and published on our website.
  • all presentations from the previous meeting have been issued to Board members.  

Sarah Lowry (SL) provided an written update for action log item DHC DB 027 regarding producing a roadmap which outlines who will have access to data and the timescales for access.


The business case for the primary care intelligence platform is currently being finalised. The development of a roadmap will be incorporated into ongoing planning and shared as it becomes available.

All other action items have been completed and are up to date.

Update on Data for Research Short Life Working Group Findings 

Roger Halliday provided an overview of findings and recommendations from the Short Life Working Group (SLWG).

The update covered:

  • SLWG identified that there is inconsistent access to data and there can be long lead times for obtaining access to data within the research industry
  • Scottish Safe Havens offer a route for supporting secure access to data for research purposes
  • engagement with data controllers, Safe Havens and the public is required to align best practice across the sector and develop and test out the policy position for accessing data for research purposes

The board agreed:

  • that engagement should be commissioned to develop and set out a clear policy position for the use of data for research purposes which ensures public benefit from industry use of public data
  • to approve a further commission for RDS to develop a use case for using health and care data with a view to expanding this use case across the wider public sector

Next steps:

CS to arrange a follow up meeting with Roger Halliday, Penni Rocks, Tom Barlow, Fiona Strachan, Scott Heald, Alistair Hodgson and Alessia Morris.

Near Time Data for Insight

Mel Giarchi, Scott Heald and Albert King provided an update on Near Time Data for Insight.

The update covered:

  • Social Care Tactical Dashboard (SCTD)
    • Recommendation - to further investigate options for  providing delivery partners with access to the  SCTD  in advance of a more strategic product being available in Seer2  
  • Alpha Phase of Programme 
    • Recommendation - that Seer2 is developed over 2023/24 to enable the provision of a Near Time Data Service. Working iteratively and in partnership NSS, PHS, and Scottish Government will work with other Health and Social Care organisations who hold and supply data. The programme will establish four workstreams: 
      • User Research & Stakeholder Engagement 
      • Data & Information Governance  
      • Data Development & Acquisition  
      • Engineering & Technical Development 
    • The anticipated technical solution will provide Health and Social Care Management Information in one location in Seer2.  It will provide users with efficient and secure, properly governed access to data using analytical tools
  • Governance 
    • Recommendation - that the Data Board establish a governance group to explore:
      • the delivery of indicators and data development to address data gaps,
      • contribute to the definition of the Alpha scope with the perspective of data governance,
      • provide ongoing oversight and governance for new indicators and access and data sharing consideration
    • This would link in with existing work already underway around data improvement across both Health and Social Care around data improvement

The board was asked:

  • to discuss next steps and the proposed recommendations for the next phase of work

The board discussed:

  • importance of engaging with social work and social care to understand the data that is of relevance across the sector and ensure the dashboard captures the needs of social care
  • that the dashboard is currently making use of data available within the social care sector
  • that Seer currently uses data that is available at a national level but this needs to be expanded

The board agreed:

  • that they are content with the recommendation to further investigate options for providing delivery partners with access to the Social Care Tactical Dashboard
  • resource needs to be considered in relation to using Alpha for delivering MI data that users can access
  • that this work will be overseen by the new Data Delivery Sub-board

Next steps:

MG and AW to arrange a meeting to discuss the data that is used in the Social Care Tactical Dashboard.

MG and AK to meet with SR to provide more information on Alpha and the technical solution and what ‘whole system modelling’ means in practice.

GSI Standards (Scan for Safety)

Stuart MacMillan and Simon White presented an overview of the Scan for Safety programme.

The presentation covered:

  • Scan for Safety is a methodology for capturing standardised data at the point of care
  • the programme’s early priority is focused on capturing medical device data in acute care settings across Scotland. Data items will be captured for the following:
    • Patient
    • Procedure
    • Product
    • Clinician and staff
    • Place
  • By March 2026, NHS Scotland will have the ability to electronically trace approximately 75% of Class III and IIb implantable medical devices in acute settings, to patients. 

The board was asked:

  • to consider and provide comment on the programme approach
  • to provide advice on the ownership of the standards
  • to provide input on how the Scan for Safety programme should engage with the Data Board going forward

The board discussed:

  • the benefits of implementing GS1 standards and aligning with international standards and how such standards are key to delivering quality care and outcomes for patients
  • GS1 standards need to be considered by the technical standards group

The board agreed:

  • GS1 standards would be used as a test case for the new Information Standards sub-board.

Next steps:

CS, SW, SM and JC to follow up with a further discussion on how the Data Board can assist with the Scan for Safety programme.

GW to invite SW to bring GS1 standards to Information Standards sub-board once it has been formed.

Information Standards Governance

Gemma Wilson and Shona Nicol presented an overview of an options appraisal on the governance of information standards for use in health and social care.

The presentation covered:

  • an overview of the current landscape, including the work of the Digital Directorate covering the data transformation framework
  • an overview of the options for governing information standards and the associated risks and opportunities
  • recommendation for governing information standards for use in social care

The board was asked:

  • to approve the recommended approach for governing standards
  • to approve setting up a standards sub board that hold delegated authority to identify, assure and implement information standards for use in health and social care

The board discussed:

  • the importance of having those with the right expertise as members of the sub board
  • that consideration should be given to the governance of public sector standards to obtain learning to inform our thinking when setting up a standards sub board
  • that Local Government Digital Office have recently set up a standards group and consideration should be given to how a standards sub board for health and care would interact and integrate with the Local Government Digital Office governance group

The board agreed:

  • the recommendation to set up a standards sub board for governing information standards for use across health and social care

Next steps:

GW to begin work to set up standards sub-board.  

Governance Update

Alistair Hodgson provided an update on the governance review undertaken within the Digital Health and Care directorate.

The update covered:

  • Strategic Portfolio Board is now being replaced by Strategic Leadership Board for Digital and Data  
  • Data Board members will be asked for their views on the overall governance within Digital Health and Care and to provide views of the role and remit of Data Board

Next steps:

Sean Doohan to send survey to Data Board members to obtain feedback on governance and role of Data Board

Any Other Business

CS advised that a Data Delivery sub board would be set up to monitor delivery of the Data Strategy and to prioritise new data requests.

Next Data Board meeting: Tuesday 27 June 13:00 to 15:30

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